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Saturday, September 20, 2003

I Know What You Did Last Summer 1997

Where Do I Go to Get My Two Hours Back?
by Nicholas Stix


Writer Kevin Williamson is undeniably a talented fellow. I was a devoted fan of Dawson's Creek for its first two+ seasons (i.e., until Williamson started farming out the writing), and I enjoyed Scream 2. But there is a dark side to Williamson, and I don't mean slasher stories. It's a greed that has him create a quality work, and then maximize his salability by signing seemingly countless contracts for other projects, quality be damned. This movie, which was clearly written with Williamson thinking more about a sequel deal than the original, is a prime example of such greed and its consequences.

In I Know ..., four friends seem to have accidentally killed a young stranger. Only he's still alive. So, they kill him for real. Except that he's not young, nor is he dead.

Each member of the group starts getting anonymous notes saying, "I know what you did last summer," and is terrorized by a faceless individual in a fisherman's slicker with a huge fish hook, who ultimately begins killing them off, one by one. They determine that they are being punished for the killing the previous summer. Except that they didn't kill who they think they killed. And then it turns out that the man they "killed," was already dead.

So, why would an already dead fisherman go get himself killed, and then exact vengeance for a non-existent crime? And why would he also kill people who had nothing to do with the original, non-existent crime? But trying to answer such questions will just give you migraines. The real crime is the way Williamson and director Jim Gillespie insult the viewer's intelligence.

Although I Know ... is only 100 minutes long, I saw it on TV, which is why it cost me two hours of my life. I am writing this review, to save others from suffering the same fate.

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